Volunteering Abroad

<p>Volunteer Abroad</p>

Volunteer Abroad

Caitlin Stumpf listens and takes notes while a speaker shares stories about volunteering abroad.

By next summer, Caitlin, a junior, hopes to be volunteering abroad for school.

"Traveling has always been a huge interest of mine," said Stumpf, "Being able to help communities while I travel abroad and experience new cultures is really exciting for me."

Central is partnering with Growth International Volunteer Excursions (G.I.V.E.) to give students the opportunity to volunteer abroad for college credit -- the school's program and partnership with G.I.V.E. Is the first of it's kind in the nation.

In the program, students spend two weeks in either Tanzania and Nicaragua, helping construct schools out of plastic bottles and other recyclable items.

They also spend time teaching children and interacting with the locals.

"We allow them to learn before they go on this trips to learn about where they're going, why are we building schools, why are we doing the things that we are doing overseas, and how does this affect not only the people who are there, but your life as a volunteer?" said G.I.V.E. Director Jake Allison.

Those who sign up for the trip can earn up to 5 college credits.

Students who have already gone say it's not only been an eye opening experience, but also an opportunity to develop relationships and connections with people across the world.

"I have a lot of new friends now from California all the way to the midwest," said Chloe Sprowl, "I still keep in contact with some of the kids in Africa and in Nicaragua. It's amazing."

"I'm really excited, I want to do it, just saying 'yeah I did a class about my trip and helping people,'" said Stumpf, "Just being able to do that is amazing."

G.I.V.E. is based in Seattle, but has spread it's services to over 40 different schools throughout the country and parts of the world.